"With great power comes great responsibility." Sound familiar? It should; it's one of Spider Man's mottos. Even if you never read the comics, you probably saw at least one of the movies, and those damn movies beat that old saw to death. An old saw, but a good one - one that Justin Bieber is now set to put into action, swinging his not inconsiderable clout around for the greater good.
[jump] "We need to change the attitudes in our society toward texting and driving and I am making it one of my personal goals to make this happen," the teen heartthrob said in a statement, likely prepared by the star on old-fashioned parchment paper by the light of a candle while on horseback, or perhaps while seated at a massive mahogany drafting table. (But, like, definitely not on his Sidekick while swerving through the Hollywood Hills with a bottle of Patron nestled between his bare, hairless knees as a Watch The Throne demo blasting from his the Bose speakers in one of his limited-edition Porcshes.)
PhoneGuard Inc. retails a technology that disables cell-phone functions in vehicles moving faster than 10 miles per hour; doubtless thousands, even millions, of lives will be saved if the product works as advertised, but the ironic twist on this is that Bieber Nation is mostly a gaggle of shrieking pre-teens, tweens, and teens for whom clicking tiny keys on BlackBerries and iPhones represents a primary form of communication; to deny them the right to tweet and text their unedited emotions into cyberspace while drifting into neighboring lanes in full-throttle downtown traffic in elementary school zones. I would wager that this piece of news reached much of his fan base via Twitter alert while driving.
The actual PSAs themselves are likely to be benign, family-friendly spots where, you know, Justin Bieber Speaks Frankly To America About The Dangers Of Driving And Texting Simultaneously. (Typing that sentence didn't feel nearly as weird as it should've.) But hopefully the producers are willing to take some risks, to push some buttons.
Here's what Gimme Noise hopes to see from this campaign:
A commercial where Justin Bieber gets pulled over for texting while driving by mean cops who don't care that he's Justin Bieber. Then one of the mean cops takes Justin Bieber's phone and smashes it on a curb while the other cop slaps on the cuffs, and the spot ends what a befuddled Justin Bieber mugshot.
A commercial when Justin Bieber and a friend are texting while driving, and as a result the friend wraps his Hummer around a tree, and so basically Justin Bieber is a killer, a real killer, not a lady killer, except that the legal system see it that way but in his own mind, Justin Bieber has blood on his hands and can't figure out how to deal with the agony, the guilt, the absence of this dead friend whose funeral had to be closed-casket because Justin Bieber just had to text about his new platinum rims immediately after buying them.
Justin Bieber dies! For real! Or maybe he's already dead, with a camera pulling in from a distance and focusing on a car crash where the Biebs is beyond hope while Kiefer Sutherland offers some grave narration about how many lives driving while texting claims per year.